How Long Does it Take to Settle a Personal Injury Claim?
The vast majority of personal injury claims in Georgia are resolved either through a settlement with an insurance carrier or through a civil personal injury lawsuit. It is difficult to adequately determine how long a personal injury claim will take to settle, as there is no standard amount of time under the law for these situations. There are various factors that can affect the length of a personal injury claim, and we want to review those factors so you have an understanding of the route that your case may take.
Settling Through the Insurance Carrier
Most personal injury claims are resolved through settlements with insurance carriers in Georgia. This includes vehicle accidents, slip and fall claims, incidents involving faulty products, and more.
Typically, when a person sustains an injury caused by the actions of another individual, they will file a claim with the at-fault party’s insurance carrier to recover compensation. This compensation includes coverage of medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering damages, property damage expenses, and more.
Settling a case through an insurance carrier is typically quicker than filing a claim in civil court. In some cases, an insurance settlement may come through within a few weeks or a few months after an injury occurs. However, that is not always what happens. There are times when insurance carriers push back from having to payout compensation at all. This could be due to a dispute over who caused the incident or how much compensation should actually be paid. If there is any type of dispute, this could drag the insurance settlement process out for months or even for more than a year.
Filing a Personal Injury Lawsuit in Court
In the event the insurance carrier refuses to offer a fair settlement, or if they completely deny the claim, it may be necessary for a personal injury victim in Georgia to file a civil lawsuit against the at-fault party directly.
Once a civil lawsuit gets filed, this places the case into the court system and begins the discovery process. Civil lawsuits can be time-consuming and costly, and they can last years. However, most civil lawsuits for personal injury claims are resolved before they go all the way to a jury trial. As both sides begin to gather evidence and exchange this evidence with one another, there may be particularly strong reasons for one or both parties to want to settle the claim or even dismiss the claim.
In the event the two parties could not reach a settlement during the discovery process or before the trial date, the case will go to trial and be heard by a jury. If the case does go to trial, it could be years from the day the claim is filed until the case is heard in court.
Working With a Lawyer
There are various benefits to settling a claim and to taking a claim to court. We strongly encourage you to work with a skilled wrongful death lawyer in Atlanta who can examine every factor related to your injury and help you determine the best steps moving forward for your situation. An attorney can begin communication and negotiations with the insurance carriers and the at-fault party to help quickly determine what steps you need to take moving forward.